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Kings Highway to re-open today

By johnboy - 26 April 2012 23

landslide

The ABC brings word that the long awaited re-opening of the Kings Highway, after the Pooh Corner landlside, is going to happen this afternoon.

This will no doubt be a relief to the whole regional economy and coast house owners throughout the region.

Also, while nervous nellies in Government like to put a clarifying “bear” into “Pooh Bear Corner” we feel that A.A. Milne’s original would be all the worse for this preventative bowdlerism. You’re smart enough to know we’re talking about a fictional bear.

UPDATE 26/04/12 09:27: For those who’ve been mislead by the Canberra Times the RTA confirms the midday today opening.

The RTA have produced a bunch of photos showing the work they’ve been doing which we thought deserving of repeating here:

What’s Your opinion?


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23 Responses to
Kings Highway to re-open today
Overheard 6:47 am 28 Apr 12

GBT said :

Snarky said :

Speaking of names on that stretch of road, where did the name “Government Bend” come from at the base of the mountain?

You mean Government Bend Over, which someone helpfully renamed it for many years.

It was pretty Benny Hill stuff but for some reason always got a bit of a giggle from me on one of the 27 365 times I’ve driven past it.

I loved the way the RTA would keep painting over “over” and graffiti (and smart arse) artists would reinstate the school boy humour.

Until they got wise and shortened the sign so the extra letters wouldn’t fit! Comedy gold.

caf 11:38 pm 27 Apr 12

DanielK said :

Is there enough traffic to warrant a tollway, privately or part privately owned? Ideally such a tollway could be built on the most direct route to the coast, probably around 100kms or so. Eg Williamsdale, Captain Flat, Majors creek, Araluen to Moruya.

Would you pay five or ten dollars toll one way for a safe modern road, cutting down casualties and crash costs to communities and individuals alike? And the saving in fuel costs, travel time handcar wear and tear.

There is absolutely no way that this would be anywhere near economically viable. Just compare it with, for example, Sydney’s M7 which is shorter, passes through much less difficult terrain, has an order of magnitude higher traffic and a higher toll than your proposal.

DanielK 10:50 pm 27 Apr 12

Is there enough traffic to warrant a tollway, privately or part privately owned? Ideally such a tollway could be built on the most direct route to the coast, probably around 100kms or so. Eg Williamsdale, Captain Flat, Majors creek, Araluen to Moruya.

Would you pay five or ten dollars toll one way for a safe modern road, cutting down casualties and crash costs to communities and individuals alike? And the saving in fuel costs, travel time handcar wear and tear.

Me no fry 9:27 am 27 Apr 12

dvaey said :

If you dont want geography to get in the way of roads leading to the coast, live on the Eastern side of the Great Dividing Range…

…The problem is the ‘alternative’ routes take you either 120km north or 150km south of Batemans Bay, and add significantly to the travel time. These roads need money spent on them for their own reasons, but should not receive funding just for being an alternative to the Kings.
.

I do live to the east of the Great Dividing Range. The traffic goes both ways, you know.

I don’t agree that money should not be spent on alternative routes to the Kings Highway – even if the money is spent on an existing alternative, rather than a new alternative.

goggles13 5:39 pm 26 Apr 12

dvaey said :

never suggested they aren’t doing enough, but the loss of the kings highway does have an effect on tourism and trade, which some people rely on for their livelihood. keeping idiots off the road should not be a reason to undertake road works.

the blockage of Brown Mountain was overcome by having a viable sealed alternative, albeit part of the Snowy Highway north of Bombala was a bit ordinary!

dvaey 5:00 pm 26 Apr 12

I travelled this road this afternoon, the landslide site has been cleaned up very nicely.

It appears there were actually two landslides in the area, with the Western one being at least twice the size of the Eastern one.

Me no fry said :

Rather than continually repairing or upgrading the Kings Highway, a road whose potential is always going to be limited by geography, would it not be better perhaps to punch a new road through at some other point – via Araluen, perhaps?

If you dont want geography to get in the way of roads leading to the coast, live on the Eastern side of the Great Dividing Range. There is a good reason why it is called that, it is great and it divides the coast from the inland. There is a road ‘punched through’ from Araluen, and if you had ever travelled it and seen the landscape around it, youd understand why there are no real alternative passes over the mountain.

goggles13 said :

it might be viable to spend a bit of money upgrading at least one of the alternative routes that NSW Roads and Maritime Dept recommended when the Kings Highway was closed.

The Kings needs money more than the Snowy Mountains and Illawarra highways. The other ‘alternative’ route through Nerriga has had nearly $100mil spent on resealing in the last couple of years. The problem is the ‘alternative’ routes take you either 120km north or 150km south of Batemans Bay, and add significantly to the travel time. These roads need money spent on them for their own reasons, but should not receive funding just for being an alternative to the Kings.

goggles13 said :

surely it wouldn’t cost much to pave 3km or 18km of dirt

It wouldnt, but given that they just spent nearly 100mil sealing 50km of that road, I think its a bit rich to suggest theyre not doing enough. Besides, being dirt keeps the idiots off the roads which leads to much lower maintanance costs.

Snarky 2:20 pm 26 Apr 12

goggles13 said :

surely it wouldn’t cost much to pave 3km or 18km of dirt

Roads are effin’ expensive.

In 2005 The NSW RTA estimated some regional roads around Inverell would cost about $185,000 per km for reconstruction, and these were already blacktop with proper roadbase. A dirt road down a mountain into a proper two-lanes-each-way road? Dunno, but I wouldn’t mind betting the better part of $500,000 per km to start with and expect it to go higher. Heck, at the time of the GDE construction some of us here on RA calculated back that a bike path was costing about $100,000 a km!

goggles13 1:50 pm 26 Apr 12

Me no fry said :

tate_alec said :

“From 1942 to 1944, the 14th Battalion of the Volunteer Defence Corps manned a shelter at a place which is now known as Pooh Bear’s Corner on Clyde Mountain. From this shelter they would trigger demolition charges under the King’s Highway between Braidwood and Bateman’s Bay. This was part of a plan to prevent any possible Japanese invasion party who might land at Bateman’s Bay from advancing on Canberra, the Nation’s Capital.”

…and 67 years after the war ended, the road still serves as a very good barrier to traffic wanting/needing to drive from the coast to Canberra.

It’s good the road is reopened – too late, unfortunately, to save me a quick trip to Canberra via Brown Mountain (a place that looks in imminent danger of its own massive landslide – while they’re still repairing the last one).

Rather than continually repairing or upgrading the Kings Highway, a road whose potential is always going to be limited by geography, would it not be better perhaps to punch a new road through at some other point – via Araluen, perhaps? And by building a new road, making it divided, straight, and with plenty of overtaking opportunities?

agree.

it might be viable to spend a bit of money upgrading at least one of the alternative routes that NSW Roads and Maritime Dept recommended when the Kings Highway was closed.

surely it wouldn’t cost much to pave 3km or 18km of dirt

GBT 12:50 pm 26 Apr 12

Snarky said :

Speaking of names on that stretch of road, where did the name “Government Bend” come from at the base of the mountain?

You mean Government Bend Over, which someone helpfully renamed it for many years.

poetix 12:19 pm 26 Apr 12

You mean the cave wasn’t a toilet? (Someone had to say it.)

Snarky 11:49 am 26 Apr 12

Speaking of names on that stretch of road, where did the name “Government Bend” come from at the base of the mountain?

Me no fry 11:38 am 26 Apr 12

tate_alec said :

“From 1942 to 1944, the 14th Battalion of the Volunteer Defence Corps manned a shelter at a place which is now known as Pooh Bear’s Corner on Clyde Mountain. From this shelter they would trigger demolition charges under the King’s Highway between Braidwood and Bateman’s Bay. This was part of a plan to prevent any possible Japanese invasion party who might land at Bateman’s Bay from advancing on Canberra, the Nation’s Capital.”

…and 67 years after the war ended, the road still serves as a very good barrier to traffic wanting/needing to drive from the coast to Canberra.

It’s good the road is reopened – too late, unfortunately, to save me a quick trip to Canberra via Brown Mountain (a place that looks in imminent danger of its own massive landslide – while they’re still repairing the last one).

Rather than continually repairing or upgrading the Kings Highway, a road whose potential is always going to be limited by geography, would it not be better perhaps to punch a new road through at some other point – via Araluen, perhaps? And by building a new road, making it divided, straight, and with plenty of overtaking opportunities?

tate_alec 10:58 am 26 Apr 12

This got me wondering why the corner was called Pooh corner, so I did a little bit of research thinking that it may have been a rather hairy corner back in the day causing people to pooh themselves.
A guy at work said it had something to do with a Winnie the Pooh bear being placed there in the 1950’s.

The only interesting bits of info I could come up with were on Wikipedia and ozatwar.com.

From Wikipedia
“A small rock cave at “Pooh Bear’s Corner” can be found near the top of the Clyde Mountain pass. This was the location of a munitions store during the Second World War that could be detonated to stop passage from the coast to the national capital inland.”

From http://www.ozatwar.com/ozatwar/demolition.htm
“From 1942 to 1944, the 14th Battalion of the Volunteer Defence Corps manned a shelter at a place which is now known as Pooh Bear’s Corner on Clyde Mountain. From this shelter they would trigger demolition charges under the King’s Highway between Braidwood and Bateman’s Bay. This was part of a plan to prevent any possible Japanese invasion party who might land at Bateman’s Bay from advancing on Canberra, the Nation’s Capital. A tunnel was dug under the King’s Highway at this location and explosives placed inside. The entrance to the tunnel has now been sealed by concrete. The conspiracy theorists suggest that there may still be some explosives inside the tunnel.”

johnboy 9:27 am 26 Apr 12

RTA guys on the radio five minutes ago?

goggles13 9:21 am 26 Apr 12

But the Crimes said it may not be open until next Monday. Who do we trust?

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